5: Care with images

hand drawing
Richard Mayer’s multimedia principle states that the use of images increases retention over text alone. They allow the student to make connections and visualize the words you are speaking. So use images liberally in your modules. However, clip art should be avoided as these generic images rarely provide any useful information to your message. Simple hand drawings and schematics are often good enough (and sometimes better than high fidelity images since you can craft them to exactly fit your lesson).

cropping and blocking imagesIf you will be using images from your clinical practice, be sure to avoid any information which could be used to identify the patient. This includes not only the patient’s name, birthdate, age and medical record number, but also any tattoos, distinctive jewelry or clothing and the patient’s identification wrist band. Simply covering it with a black box, cropping it out or deleting it in a word processor does not remove the underlying meta-data. Those black boxes can often easily be removed. Word processors often save several versions of a document, so a trip through the revision history can reveal the personal health information. When cropping photos, they often retain their EXIF tags and preview thumbnails, both of which may contain sensitive information.

You’ll also need to avoid copyrighted images. We are all guilty of grabbing the first image generated by a web search engine that fits our needs. Many of these are protected by copyright. Once its in your video, it’s not possible to remove the picture. You’ll need to take down and re-record your entire video. Its best to avoid this predicament in the first place. Search for images in the public domain. Images within these sites can often be freely used with proper attribution: Wikimedia Commons or The Centre for Disease control Public Health Image Library.

If you are adept with image manipulation software, you can find many medical images on Wikimedia Commons which you can modify to fit your module. Break a bone. Put a bullet in a lung. This software isn’t difficult to use and there are a myriad of tutorials found online. Some examples are Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator and their free, open-source alternatives Gimp and Inkscape. Remember to provide proper attribution for these images. While they are free to use, you cannot claim that they are your work. For example, the hand bones were created by Mariana Ruiz Villarreal.

This author prefers to personally draw the images. No one is grading for quality so don’t be afraid of drawing like a 1st grader. (If there are any skills you’d like demonstrated, please note this in the comments and we will try to oblige).

Searching Google Images

Tip 6

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